No rally: full recession, fears of deflation and the spectre of Marx

happiness: sadness: Tokyo stock exchange on another Black Friday, Oct. 24 2008 (AP)


31 ottobre. BREAKING NEWS: – rottura tra CAI e piloti, l’Alitalia ad un passo dal fallimento. IN TAL CASO NON  SUBENTREREBBE NEMMENO UNA COMPAGNIA EUROPEA, ma si venderebbe a pezzi. Colannino a colloquio dal Premier (ore  7pm) – Draghi: non deve essere l’EURIBOR  il tasso di riferimento per i mutui casa

DOPO IL MASSIMO. Speriamo che me la cavo.

La riuscita manifestazione PD dei 750.000 del 25 ottobre, e successivamente lo sciopero generale della scuola,  alzano – ceteris paribus, benche’ non di molto – le chances che rinasca un’opposizione in Italia, quindi la lotta di classe possa ridurre il peso della crisi sugli oppressi, i  pensionati ed il popolo bue. La c.d. “sinistra di governo” taccia per sempre, dopo che mentre stava per crollare il capitalismo finanziario, ha cercato invano di far carte false e convincere  i lavoratori di mettere le loro liquidazioni e pensioni nei FONDI BIDONE. Anche questi Prodi ministri e sindacalisti hanno la faccia come il culo. Per fortuna c’erano i sindacati di base a fare contro-informazione.


Per la prima volta sotto il fuoco di fila del Parlamento, alla Commissione Oversight and Government Reform, Alan Greenspan (resp. No. 1 al mondo del crollo del capitale finanziario) fa finta di fare auto-critica ieri: fu “a flaw” non regolare i derivati. MA IL BANCHIERE CRIMINALE DICE PURE IL CONTRARIO:

Greenspan, responding to questions, said only “onerous” regulation would have prevented the financial crisis. Stifling rules would have suppressed growth and hurt Americans’ standards of living, he said. (source: Bloomberg)

IL BANCHIERE BASTARDO, LA FACCIA COME IL CULO, ha sostenuto ancora una ricetta auto-regolativa delle sue, che hanno governato a colpi di bubbles, e stanno portando il mondo alla fame. Quando una finanziaria emette securities, se ne deve tenere per se una certa quota, così e’ incentivata a dare il giusto prezzo al rischio.


Invece il nostro vituperato Cavaliere, in una delle sue 10.000 smentite aveva azzardato che si potevano chiudere i mercati: ebbene, lo dice pure – a Bloomberg – Roubini che se ne intende. Il Cavaliere, ormai lo sappiamo, vale sempre PRIMA della smentita. Il problema e’ che con lui, il geniale Brunetta  e Hood Robin Tremonti al governo vale la


“Se qualcosa può andar storto, la catastrofe e’ assicurata”. Mentre l’ ultimo governo Prodi tergiversava, questi ci potrebbero portare dritti dritti …


A share trader behind a false one dollar bill (much similar to the one alive, you see at Crozza Italia TV show) at the German stock exchange in Frankfurt, October 24, 2008.   REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach


Oct. 27 Reuters   Korean Confederation of Trade Union Vice-President Ju Bong-hee takes part in a protest against the ongoing meeting of the Global Forum on Migration and Development (FGMD) as he is blocked by anti-riot police in Manila, Philippines, October 27, 2008. The number of undocumented migrant workers across the world is expected to rise in the face of the global financial crisis, trade unions and business leaders warned on Monday, urging governments to respect labor rights.   MIGRANT ARE NOT COMMODITIES: REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco Oct. 24 Alphaville

Recommended reading: Roubini’s latest take: We’ve reached a situation of sheer panic… There will be massive dumping of assets [and] hundreds of hedge funds are going to go bust. Systemic risk has become bigger and bigger… We’re seeing the beginning of a run on a big chunk of the hedge funds… don’t be surprised if policy makers need to close down markets for a week or two in coming days.

Here is our comment  to Fabius Maximus,, posted on rge

New recommendations to solve our financial crisis (and I admit that I was wrong) Fabius Maximus | Oct 23, 2008 Summary:  Please vote, and do so carefully!  This could be one of the most important elections in American history, as continued economic crisis might require a massive (and hopefully temporary) expansion of government power — unlike anything we have seen except during wars. On September 25 I sketched out A solution to our financial crisis, in three parts. (1)  Stabilize the financial system – Being attempted, probably now it’s too late. (2a)  Stabilize the economy with monetary stimulus– Rates are coming down and money printed, but probably with relatively little effect. (2b)  Stabilize the economy with fiscal stimulus — Just now being considered; will work but slow to implement and slow to have effect. (3)  Arrange long-term financing for steps #1 and #2 with our foreign creditors – Unacceptable to our leaders at this time. Parts 1 and 2 are being implemented, much as described.  Part 3 was described as necessary at some point in the future.  I said that these probably would not work over the medium to long term, but would mitigate the downturn (slow or even reduce the economic decline, and alleviate the resulting suffering). I was wrong.  The rate of decline — destabilization of the global financial system – has become so great that these measures will prove insufficient.  In my opinion (these are, of course, guesses).  Since I doubt our leaders have a Plan B, here is a suggestion. Extreme mobilization by the government of our economic resources, as we have done during wars.

Hei Fab I always read your blog and I quote it, suggest it from mines. Thanks for the self-critique, actually more convincing than Greenspan’s… I agree on a war-like mobilization for the immediate short term, a sort of OBAMA NEW DEAL or even more than that. The war metaphor is important in the US, where only military Keynesianism is allowed by the “public opinion” and pop culture. And beyond? I can’t see how this severe recession and credit meltdown might not go into sharp deflation and then depression, until wealth redistribution is taken seriously and DRASTICALLY into account. Yours Fabius Minimus Reply to this comment By enzo fabio arcangeli on 2008-10-24 03:25:21    Oct. 21.

THE FRENCH STATE entropy: from champions nationaux to no selection, saving everybody.

Sarkozy applies financial socialism and semi-nationalise 6 banks. Meltdown financial capitalism rediscovers “Partecipazioni Statali”, i.e. what Mussolini  already did in the 1930s. ft – France injects €10.5bn into top six banks

The French government’s injection in the form of subordinated loans will shore up balance sheets and maintain credit provision for consumers and businesses – 11:28 Crédit Agricole would receive €3bn, BNP Paribas €2.55bn, Société Générale €1.7bn, Crédit Mutuel €1.2bn, Caisse d’Epargne €1.1bn and Banque Populaire €0.95bn.

WE REPRODUCE HERE THE ABSTRACT OF OUR STATIC PAGE  “AAA UPDATES …”, that we strongly  recommend to our readers and students, since it develops in real time a collection and comment of economic analyses and policies. This ABSTRACT answers the historical FAQ no.1, after the Wall Street collapse.


THE DEFINITIVE CRISIS OF FINANCIAL CAPITALISM? MAYBE; BUT NOT  NECESSARILY, and the game is not over yet. Its Greenspan – Reaganite standard version is certainly dead forever –  in the earthquake moved by the shadow finance meltdown. But – doing  their business as usual of collaborationists with Rentier Capital –  social-democrats “doc” à la Gordon Brown (followed willy nilly by such neophites as Bush, Merkel and Sarkò) are desperately looking for a “financial socialist” escape from this cul-de-sac, meltdown and ruins of a Glorious Years past.  Most likely, they won’t succeed: a. first of all since their analysis is wrong (it’s not based  on Keynes, Kalecki and Minsky), b. therefore their cures are just palliatives; c. they just use State muscles, not the brain (see a Lex editorial on this, on Oct. 13: Brownian Motion in Europe). We can take these two Marx-Keynesian axioms for granted. For sure: 1) By Bernd Debusmann

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Capitalism as we used to know it is on its deathbed. And those who predicted that the old brand, the unfettered, American-promoted system, was a danger to the world, are being vindicated. They include Karl Marx … (our red-bold and underlining).

2) Giorgio Ruffolo, following but also updating Marx: “Il capitalismo ha i secoli contati (its end is a matter of centuries)”. Now Financial Capitalism might be dead. But capitalism as such will not disappear soon, not before an evolutionarily fitter “mode of production and distribution” emerges – within the same social evolution and organisation, carrying the irreversible decline of Late Capitalisms (Ernst Mandel). 3) Carlota Perez (in sintonia with Wallerstein, in a LW perspective on deflation – see also Aglietta and Berrebi): behind the financial eltdown catastrophe, there are institutional and political nodes delayed for decades. An ICT-led long wave almost aborted as a result: 4) Wallerstein, the marxist historian, concludes his Oct. 15 post on  badmatthew: by saying that – 4A)  capitalism IS DEAD – a dissenting view – as a matter of decades, NOT centuries (versus Ruffolo), – 4B) and joining post-Schumpeterian Carlota’s and neo-marxist Aglietta’s regulation arguments: What happens when we reach such a point is that the system bifurcates (in the language of complexity studies). The immediate consequence is high chaotic turbulence, which our world-system is experiencing at the moment and will continue to experience for perhaps another 20-50 years. (…)  We can assert with confidence that the present system cannot survive. What we cannot predict is which new order will be chosen to replace it, because it will be the result of an infinity of individual pressures. But sooner or later, a new system will be installed. This will not be a capitalist system but it may be far worse (even more polarizing and hierarchical) or much better (relatively democratic and relatively egalitarian) than such a system. The choice of a new system is the major worldwide political struggle of our times. As for our immediate short-run ad interim prospects, it is clear what is happening everywhere. We have been moving into a protectionist world (forget about so-called globalization). We have been moving into a much larger direct role of government in production. Even the United States and Great Britain are partially nationalizing the banks and the dying big industries. We are moving into populist government-led redistribution, which can take left-of-center social-democratic forms or far right authoritarian forms.”

ft Man in the News: John Maynard Keynes Keynes’ ideas for saving capitalism from itself look increasingly relevant, and his words are a fair assessment of the dangers we face once again – Oct-17 The cautious, prudent wsj on  Oct.18, Bernanke and the Famous Helicopter:

with even the talk of deflation on the horizon, as unlikely as the prospect may be, get ready for more caricatures of Ben Bernanke sitting in a helicopter and dropping cash from the sky.

BEHIND THE CORNER – the possibility, risk of a  SHORT-TERM ACCELERATION, CONSOLIDATION OF THE LONG-TERM DEFLATIONARY GLOBAL REGIME (analysed by Aglietta and Berrebi in their book), that is already governing the global markets (commodities, finance, money, and final products) from 15 years on.  That is, a sharp fall of prices and (consumer, investment, intermediate) demand delays, in a deadly downward spiral. The Fed is worrying about it; although they believe this risk is still low: A NEW RATE REBATE WILL FOLLOW SOON, and this signals they are worrying a lot, and planning “liquidity trap” policies (at zero real interest rates).


(Derrida was right)

Marx reappears after so long on top of Reuters news, with a nice picture (I told you so),  in an Oct. 15 column by  Bernd Debusmann:

Karl Marx and the world financial crisis

Those measures included buying stakes in major banks – in effect partial nationalization – and would make Marx smile if he could rise from his grave. In the Communist Manifesto he and his collaborator Friedrich Engels published in 1848, Marx listed government control of capital as one of the ten essential steps on the road to communism. Step five: “Centralization of credit in the hands of the state …” … the control center of the financial market has already begun shifting from New York to Washington. (…) Amid the gloom and anxiety of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, which started in the United States in 1929 and then spread to the rest of the world, there are hopes that Capitalism 2.0 (if it ever comes about) will result in a more equal society. “There is a tremendous opportunity now to narrow the income gap,” says Sam Pizzigati of the Institute for Policy Studies, a Washington think tank.

The ft certifies what markets have announced again and again, with NO rally – after the October 6-10 BLACK WEEK, and the policy answer:

a sudden and massive nationalisation of the entire Atlantic  (US-EU) credit industry.

An interesting debate was occurring in Italy between Alesina and Draghi: Why didn’t you nationalise before? According to Draghi, in August the current scenario was unthinkable.

Shall we suggest the Bank of Italy to read Roudini and de(e)pre(ce)ssion?

ft – Editorial

Saving the banks was just a first step

Published: October 17 2008 20:40 | Last updated: October 17 2008 20:40

The tide, finally, seems to have turned on the banking crisis. More financial institutions will run into trouble, but governments have moved ahead of the crisis and can – at long last – deal with it systematically. If banks now support the real economy by providing credit, more drastic steps – like full-blown nationalisation – ought not be necessary. Despite arguably the worst financial problems in a century, parallels to the Great Depression now seem hyperbolical. That is a serious step forward. We are, however, still heading into a vicious real economy slowdown. Forecasters seem to have been competing in a reverse auction to cut their expectations for growth in the next two years. A prolonged period of stagnation and recession now seems likely for the US, UK and eurozone, likely to be the worst slowdown since the early 1980s. Pain will not be confined to or concentrated in any one sector – patterns of unemployment are impossible to predict. But some industries are particularly vulnerable; makers of hefty durable goods are the first to suffer. Sales of cars, furniture and home appliances are already in free-fall. (…) Governments have, suddenly, risen to the challenges facing them, turning horrifying problems of bank confidence into manageable fiscal woes. They may even need to do the same with problems of growth by expanding public spending.

Better later than never. What is missing in the authoritative London paper, is the implicit class conflict: Hood Robin or Robin Hood? Which fiscal policy? Ask Joe the plumber… The wsj is certifying today (Oct. 18) that the LR deflation (that they ignore) is possibly giving pace to an acute, SR one, the Fed is seriously thinking and even acting about:

Threat of Deflation Looms

Policy makers navigating the U.S. through the global credit crisis may have a new concern on the horizon for 2009: deflation. The risk of deflation remains slim. But the financial shock and a faltering economy can set the stage for a deflationary environment.

Bernanke and the Famous Helicopter

Today’s financial shock and deep economic turmoil are common preconditions for deflation. As reported in Saturday’s Wall Street Journal, however, Federal Reserve officials see a broad-based decline in prices as possible though highly unlikely.

The central bank faced the prospect of deflation five years ago, as core inflation (excluding food and energy) and the federal funds rate sat around 1%. … options to stimulate economic growth even if the federal funds rate were to drop to zero. Among them: using communications to shape public expectations about the course of interest rates; increasing the size of the central bank’s balance sheet; and changing the composition of the balance sheet to target particular areas. (The Fed is already doing some of that targeting with a balance sheet that has expanded enormously in recent weeks.)

Fed speeches and papers on deflation: Deflation: Making Sure “It” Doesn’t Happen Here (Bernanke) Conducting Monetary Policy at Very Low Short-Term Interest Rates (Bernanke and Vincent Reinhart) Monetary Policy Alternatives at the Zero Bound (Bernanke, Reinhart and Brian Sack)

2nd & last (?) rally day


w post

live coverage

Posted at 2:09 PM ET, 10/14/2008

Reid Calls for More Stimulus

In a statement released moments ago by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), he echoed calls by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for an economic stimulus plan aimed at Main Street, now that the Wall Street bailout/rescue plan apparently is underway.

Faq 2. In a severe recession, on the verge of a decade (2010s) depression,  where are the fundamentals of profits actualisation? Likely at about 1/2 of current stock values, i.e. 2/3 down from the Autumn 2007 apex.  A different answer in the ft, by LEX (implicitly assuming we are so close to the bottom floor ?):

Time to buy?

Published: Monday 13 Oct 2008 09:55

With stock markets falling day by day, investment gurus suggest that it is time to buy – taking a 30-year view.  Certainly, there are plenty of companies across the developed world in little immediate danger and trading at eyewateringly low prices. But there is no telling how long a market recovery could take. The Dow Jones Industrial Average took 24 years to regain its pre-crash highs following the Great Depression. Japanese equities are still a quarter of what they were almost 20 years ago.

BREAKING NEWS.  -3% Nasdaq, at 2 pm ET, -4.5% at 3 pm ET



Market Index Charts


At  5pm GMT = 1pm ET (see the self-updating graphs) the Nasdaq was losing 1.35%, at 5.30: – 1.75%, at 6.00: -2.45%; on expectations of  a severe recession hitting ICT profits and consumption (on a Pepsi profit warning). DIJA  + 0.34%, then becoming negative at 5.35pm GMT (1.35 ET).

The rally is over at Wall St., and it lasted JUST 1 day.

Tokyo up a Guinness 14%. Europe on average up 3% (DJ Stoxx 600), but it might be the end of it, and the slide down continue –  although not as catastrophically as last week.


Roubini Sees Worst Recession in 40 Years, Rally’s End (Update1)

By Eric Martin and Rhonda Schaffler


Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) — Nouriel Roubini, the professor who predicted the financial crisis in 2006, said the U.S. will suffer its worst recession in 40 years, causing the rally in the stock market to “sputter.”

“There are significant downside risks still to the market and the economy,” Roubini, 50, a New York University professor of economics, said in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “We’re going to be surprised by the severity of the recession and the severity of the financial losses.”

The economist said the recession will last 18 to 24 months, driving unemployment to 9 percent, and already depressed home prices will fall another 15 percent. The U.S. government will need to double its purchase of bank stakes and force lenders to eliminate dividends to save them from bankruptcy, Roubini added. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said today he plans to use $250 billion of taxpayer funds to purchase equity in thousands of financial firms to halt a credit freeze that threatened to drive companies into bankruptcy and eliminate jobs.

“This will be the first round of recapitalization of the banks,” Roubini said. “The government has to decide to intervene much more directly in the provision of credit and the management of these companies.” (…)

“The stock market is going to stop rallying soon enough when they see the economy is really tanking right now,” Roubini added. (…)

Roubini said total credit losses resulting from the meltdown of the subprime mortgage market will be “closer to $3 trillion,” up from his previous estimate of $1 trillion to $2 trillion. The International Monetary Fund estimated $1.4 trillion estimate on Oct. 7. Financial firms have so far reported $637 billion in losses, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. 

SEE OUR ESTIMATE (from last Summer) in our blog title: $3 tr, IRAQ cost = SUBCRIME cost.


Disaster Averted, EU’s Recession Looms

European governments can congratulate themselves on preventing the region’s troubled financial sector from collapsing. But the focus will swiftly return to the bleak macroeconomic outlook.

Actually, we expect the Wall Street worries on the recession to spread tomorrow, Wednesday in Asia and Europe.


Worry over profit outlook halts early stock burst

Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:05pm EDT = 16.05 GMT

By Ellis Mnyandu


NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Nasdaq fell in choppy trading on Tuesday as investors sold technology shares on fears that fallout from the credit turmoil would hurt profits despite the U.S. government’s plan to invest in banks to shore up the financial system.

The Dow and S&P 500 were moderately higher after a sharp rise at the open. Concerns about the broad profit outlook overshadowed the Treasury Department’s plan to inject $250 billion in major banks to stabilize the financial system in hopes of averting further damage to the economy.

A profit miss by soft drink company PepsiCo , whose shares were down 9 percent, added to worries over how consumer spending will hold up against declines in home values, stocks and tighter credit.

On Nasdaq, shares of chip maker Intel Corp fell more than 5 percent to $16.02 before it reports quarterly results after Tuesday’s closing bell.

The semiconductor index was off nearly 4 percent, a day after Wall Street roared back from its worst week ever with one of its best single days ever on Monday.

“We may be trying to establish the floor with the credit crisis, and that’s why you had the euphoria in the last day and a half,” said Alan Lancz, president of Alan B. Lancz & Associates Inc investment advisory firm in Toledo, Ohio. “Now people are starting to look at how much damage the credit crisis has done to the economy and earnings.”

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 58.86 points, or 0.63 percent, to 9,446.47. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed 6.59 points, or 0.66 percent, to 1,009.94. The Nasdaq Composite Index slid 24.42 points, or 1.32 percent, to 1,819.83.

Shares of software maker Microsoft Corp declined more than 5 percent to $24.17. Computer maker Dell slide nearly 6 percent to $14.32.

w post

Posted at 12:03 PM ET, 10/14/2008

Crisis Hits Real Economy: Pepsi Flat


PepsiCo. which, like Coca-Cola, has long been considered a “safety stock” — in good times or bad, folks drink soda — said this morning that people actually aren’t drinking soda. Result: The company will cut 3,300 jobs in the United States.


The company’s stock is being hammered thanks to a trifecta of bad news from the soda giant this morning: Third-quarter profits fell short of Wall Street expectations, the company cut its full-year outlook and it refused to give guidance for 2009.


Nearing lunchtime, shares of PepsiCo. are trading down about 10 percent. 

ft – Global markets rally as US launches bank rescue

Asian and European (Milan closes at + 3.6%) Markets


are still in rally mood today, Tuesday Oct. 14, but Wall Street’s COLD SHOWER decelerated the European rally at end of the day.

The very short lived rally (1 day ad  a half) was an answer to the week-end instant diffusion of Gordon Brown’s pseudo-nationalisations (Plan B, after the useless Pauson’s Plan A) in US and Europe; in each country measures are undertaken, but also find a lot of social and economic opposition and discussion, A dramatic acceleration in the US where the top 9 banks are partially State owned ($250 bn): Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, Merrill Lynch (also becoming controlled by Mitsubishi), Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Bank of New York Mellon, and State Street. In Italy it was observed: What about the Made in Italy, if its environment, the districts and supply chains of SMEs, are about to disappear, since they receive no credit?  A much similar question (mutatis mutandis) is posed in the US (see below). 


Dow Soars 11 Percent; Biggest Point Gain Ever
The U.S. government is dramatically escalating its response to the financial crisis by planning to invest $250 billion in the country’s banks, forcing nine of the largest to accept a Treasury stake in what amounts to a partial nationalization.


From today’s update in Section 2 of our “AAA updates on subcrimes” page:

Wall Street and the global financial system are pro tempore nationalised in US and Europe.

The stock and credit markets historical BLACK WEEK  (6-10 Oct. 2008) has wiped out Paulson’s Plan B. Europe and the US hurried up to adopt Gordon’s Brown PLAN B – and the Labour Premier from a lame duck suddenly became the prophet of Financial Socialism, Hood Robin. As Lex (Brownian Motion in Europe. FT, Oct. 13) puts it

The lugubrious British premier, out of sorts at home and seriously adrift in the polls, has been styled as a swashbuckling conductor in the Spanish press, and a “magician” in France. Europe has apparently bought into Mr Brown’s conviction that this is a severe, but transient crisis of confidence that can be overcome by piling on more and more government debt.

While the wisdom of that strategy is questionable, it is clear that there is strength in numbers. If governments all muck in together, using taxpayers’ money to recapitalise banks

What about Mean Street, the middle, lower and under classes?

There is no alternative (against the persisting risks of the severe recession to degenerate into a 2010s depression) than a Robin Hood policy for the poor and the middle class. As the historian Howard Zinn puts it, arguing in advance for an Obama New Deal (Beyond the New Deal, The Nation, April 7 – oL March 20),
We might wonder why no Democratic Party contender for the presidency has invoked the memory of the New Deal and its unprecedented series of laws aimed at helping people in need. The New Deal was tentative, cautious, bold enough to shake the pillars of the system but not to replace them. It created many jobs but left 9 million unemployed. It built public housing but not nearly enough. It helped large commercial farmers but not tenant farmers. Excluded from its programs were the poorest of the poor, especially blacks. As farm laborers, migrants or domestic workers, they didn’t qualify for unemployment insurance, a minimum wage, Social Security or farm subsidies.
Still, in today’s climate of endless war and uncontrolled greed, drawing upon the heritage of the 1930s would be a huge step forward. Perhaps the momentum of such a project could carry the nation past the limits of FDR’s reforms, especially if there were a popular upsurge that demanded it.


Low-Wage Workers
Low-wage workers have been hardest hit by the economic downturn, yet most remain hopeful about the future. 




Take On Me

By Daniel Politi

Posted Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2008, at 6:42 AM ET (our bold characters)

The U.S. government is officially switching gears. In news that almost all the papers banner across the front page, the Treasury Department will be announcing that the U.S. government plans to invest up to $250 billion in the nation’s banks in a move that will effectively translate into a partial nationalization of the financial institutions that take federal money. In addition, the government would provide insurance on all deposits in non-interest-bearing accounts and insure certain types of bank debt. The New York Times calls it the Treasury Department’s “boldest move yet” to deal with the financial crisis. The Wall Street Journal does the best job of summarizing that the move “intertwines the banking sector with the federal government for years to come and gives taxpayers a direct stake in the future of American finance, including any possible losses.” USA Today points out that Europe’s moves to prop up banks across the pond, “set the pattern for the U.S. plan” because if the Bush administration failed to act “in a similar fashion, investors might have moved money abroad to seek safety.”

The move represents a dramatic shift for Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who had previously opposed the idea of taking equity stakes in banks. The Los Angeles Times specifies that while the government still plans to go ahead with its plan to buy toxic securities, “the new strategy is likely to move that into a secondary position.” The new program will be divided into two parts. First, the government will devote $125 billion to buy a minority stake in nine of the nation’s top financial institutions and then make the other $125 billion available to thousands of banks and thrifts across the country. Executives from the nine big banks met with Paulson yesterday and while some weren’t happy with the plan, they all agreed to participate. The Washington Post says Paulson told the executives they needed to agree to it for the good of the American economy, illustrating that while “officially the program was voluntary, the banks had little choice in the matter.”

By pretty much forcing the nine big financial institutions to take government money, officials wanted to make sure there would be no stigma associated with receiving the funds, which would have made the entire plan useless. The WSJ and USAT have the full list of the nine banks that will now be partially owned by taxpayers: Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Bank of New York Mellon, and State Street.

The amount of money each bank will get won’t be uniform—the WSJ has the specific numbers—but essentially the Treasury will buy up to $25 billion in preferred stock in each of the financial institutions. The stock each bank issues “will pay special dividends, at a 5 percent interest rate that will be increased to 9 percent after five years,” the NYT details. The government also added a provision that would allow taxpayers to benefit if the stock value of the financial institutions increases.

The NYT notes that while financial institutions that accept government money won’t be required to eliminate dividends or fire their chief executives, they will “be held to strict restrictions on compensation.” But the WSJ isn’t impressed and notes that the restrictions “are relatively weak compared with what congressional Democrats had wanted.” Key Democratic lawmakers emphasized yesterday that they fully expect the government to impose strict limits on compensation, signaling that a failure to do so could put in doubt whether Congress releases more of the $700 billion after Treasury officials burn through the first installment.

The LAT says that some in the banking industry “reacted with alarm” when details of the plan began appearing in news reports and they predicted the government would soon hear from hundreds of angry banks that were left out of the first phase of the program. “This worked in Sweden, where you have about 14 banks,” one “industry insider” said, adding that it’s little surprise that Paulson, a Wall Street insider, would choose to pump up big New York financial institutions first. “It’s like picking your kids,” he said. The WP notes that there is a risk the banks will use the government money “to bolster their balance sheets” instead of increasing lending, but regulators will apparently pressure the financial institutions not to let that happen.

(…) If there’s a clear winner in all this it’s the British government. Of course, that could all change if the rescue plans that are taking shape around the world fail. But as of now, Prime Minister Gordon Brown, went, in a matter of days, from lame duck to global leader as the plan he announced last week to inject billions into British banks was quickly taken up by European leaders and now the United States. “He’s the cat who got the cream,” a British historian tells the WP. “It was a gift from heaven for him to have this crisis in his field of expertise.”

For their part, investors are cheering. News that European leaders were planning to prop up banks, coupled with anticipation for a new U.S. program, sent stock prices soaring yesterday. The Dow Jones industrial average ended more than 900 points higher, the largest point gain in history, for an 11 percent gain, the biggest since 1933. As the WSJ highlights in its front page, history has shown that these quick gains can be short-lived, which is why no one was ready to say that yesterday marked a turning point in the ongoing crisis.

Roubini Hood on Nottingham meltdown

picture: a wikimedia 2001 photo of the Nottingham monument, under GNU Free Doc. license (from Robin Hood wiki).



E’  già in corso una  recessione U-shaped che durerà 2 anni (2008-10), e non e’ escludibile una depressione L-shaped per i 2010s, secondo i tempestivi commenti del prof. Roubini alla Black Week. DE(E)PRE(CE)SSION!

La sua analisi e’ implacabile, e mette nel sacco tutti i falsi profeti di auto-cure del capitalismo finanziario moribondo.

Cure drastiche, dure e Roubini-Hoodiane: vedere i punti finali del doc allegato. Un appello ai 2 meeting di Washington:

– o fermate il vecchio mondo con politiche Marx-Keynesiane,

– o sarà depressione e fame. Socialismo o depressione.

Come sanno già i nostri lettori, noi precisiamo che le politiche (benche’ sinora balbuzienti e  post-factum) sono GIA’ in un territorio socialista, ma quello sbagliato: lo statalismo di Lorsignori, come il Goldman Sachs  Socialism. Roubini Hood, col suo keynesismo coerente, fornisce un prezioso stimolo ad una piattaforma di lotta di classe internazionale per un Altro Socialismo.

Sulla sciocchezza delle politiche sin qui pensate, basti ricordare quello che osservano anche i commentatori più moderati:

a) gli US insistono a  non nazionalizzare le banche, quindi usano mezzi incoerenti anche coi loro discutibili fini di “Financial Socialism”;

b) la dis-unione europea si sta coprendo di ridicolo.




The crisis was caused by the largest leveraged asset bubble and credit bubble in the history of humanity where excessive leveraging and bubbles were not limited to housing in the U.S. but also to housing in many other countries and excessive borrowing by financial institutions and some segments of the corporate sector and of the public sector in many and different economies: an housing bubble, a mortgage bubble, an equity bubble, a bond bubble, a credit bubble, a commodity bubble, a private equity bubble, a hedge funds bubble are all now bursting at once in the biggest real sector and financial sector deleveraging since the Great Depression.”




another rapid round of policy rate cuts of the order of at least 150 basis points on average globally;

a temporary blanket guarantee of all deposits while a triage between insolvent financial institutions that need to be shut down and distressed but solvent institutions that need to be partially nationalized with injections of public capital is made;

a rapid reduction of the debt burden of insolvent households preceded by a temporary freeze on all foreclosures;

massive and unlimited provision of liquidity to solvent financial institutions;

public provision of credit to the solvent parts of the corporate sector to avoid a short-term debt refinancing crisis for solvent but illiquid corporations and small businesses;

a massive direct government fiscal stimulus packages that includes public works, infrastructure spending, unemployment benefits, tax rebates to lower income households and provision of grants to strapped and crunched state and local government;

a rapid resolution of the banking problems via triage, public recapitalization of financial institutions and reduction of the debt burden of distressed households and borrowers;

an agreement between lender and creditor countries running current account surpluses and borrowing, and debtor countries running current account deficits to maintain an orderly financing of deficits and a recycling of the surpluses of creditors to avoid a disorderly adjustment of such imbalances.”


We just received this mail from Prof. Roubini, and reproduce here the entire document – for its clarity, objectivity, relevance, and the emergency in which subcriminal rentiers and their Reaganite State have thrown our own lives; we, the prisoners of the collapse of our capitalist cages, much alike the victims of the Twin Towers.

Thanks, Professor Roubini Hood!

Nouriel Roubini: The world is at severe risk of a global systemic financial meltdown and a severe global depression


The U.S. and advanced economies’ financial systems are now headed towards a near-term systemic financial meltdown as day after day stock markets are in free fall, money markets have shut down while their spreads are skyrocketing, and credit spreads are surging through the roof. There is now the beginning of a generalized run on the banking system of these economies; a collapse of the shadow banking system, i.e. those non-banks (broker dealers, non-bank mortgage lenders, SIV and conduits, hedge funds, money market funds, private equity firms) that, like banks, borrow short and liquid, are highly leveraged and lend and invest long and illiquid, and are thus at risk of a run on their short-term liabilities; and now a roll-off of the short term liabilities of the corporate sectors that may lead to widespread bankruptcies of solvent but illiquid financial and non-financial firms.


On the real economic side, all the advanced economies representing 55% of global GDP (U.S., Eurozone, UK, other smaller European countries, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Japan) entered a recession even before the massive financial shocks that started in the late summer made the liquidity and credit crunch even more virulent and will thus cause an even more severe recession than the one that started in the spring. So we have a severe recession, a severe financial crisis and a severe banking crisis in advanced economies.


There was no decoupling among advanced economies and there is no decoupling but rather recoupling of the emerging market economies with the severe crisis of the advanced economies. By the third quarter of this year global economic growth will be in negative territory signaling a global recession. The recoupling of emerging markets was initially limited to stock markets that fell even more than those of advanced economies as foreign investors pulled out of these markets; but then it spread to credit markets and money markets and currency markets bringing to the surface the vulnerabilities of many financial systems and corporate sectors that had experienced credit booms and that had borrowed short and in foreign currencies. Countries with large current account deficits and/or large fiscal deficits and with large short-term foreign currency liabilities and borrowings have been the most fragile. But even the better performing ones – like the BRICs club of Brazil, Russia, India and China – are now at risk of a hard landing. Trade and financial and currency and confidence channels are now leading to a massive slowdown of growth in emerging markets with many of them now at risk not only of a recession but also of a severe financial crisis.


The crisis was caused by the largest leveraged asset bubble and credit bubble in the history of humanity where excessive leveraging and bubbles were not limited to housing in the U.S. but also to housing in many other countries and excessive borrowing by financial institutions and some segments of the corporate sector and of the public sector in many and different economies: an housing bubble, a mortgage bubble, an equity bubble, a bond bubble, a credit bubble, a commodity bubble, a private equity bubble, a hedge funds bubble are all now bursting at once in the biggest real sector and financial sector deleveraging since the Great Depression.


At this point the recession train has left the station; the financial and banking crisis train has left the station. The delusion that the U.S. and advanced economies contraction would be short and shallow – a V-shaped six month recession – has been replaced by the certainty that this will be a long and protracted U-shaped recession that may last at least two years in the U.S. and close to two years in most of the rest of the world. And given the rising risk of a global systemic financial meltdown, the probability that the outcome could become a decade long L-shaped recession – like the one experienced by Japan after the bursting of its real estate and equity bubble – cannot be ruled out.


And in a world where there is a glut and excess capacity of goods while aggregate demand is falling, soon enough we will start to worry about deflation, debt deflation, liquidity traps and what monetary policy makers should do to fight deflation when policy rates get dangerously close to zero.


At this point the risk of an imminent stock market crash – like the one-day collapse of 20% plus in U.S. stock prices in 1987 – cannot be ruled out as the financial system is breaking down, panic and lack of confidence in any counterparty is sharply rising and the investors have totally lost faith in the ability of policy authorities to control this meltdown.


This disconnect between more and more aggressive policy actions and easings, and greater and greater strains in the financial market is scary. When Bear Stearns’ creditors were bailed out to the tune of $30 bn in March, the rally in equity, money and credit markets lasted eight weeks; when in July the U.S. Treasury announced legislation to bail out the mortgage giants Fannie and Freddie, the rally lasted four weeks; when the actual $200 billion rescue of these firms was undertaken and their $6 trillion liabilities taken over by the U.S. government, the rally lasted one day, and by the next day the panic had moved to Lehman’s collapse; when AIG was bailed out to the tune of $85 billion, the market did not even rally for a day and instead fell 5%. Next when the $700 billion U.S. rescue package was passed by the U.S. Senate and House, markets fell another 7% in two days as there was no confidence in this flawed plan and the authorities. Next, as authorities in the U.S. and abroad took even more radical policy actions between October 6th and October 9th (payment of interest on reserves, doubling of the liquidity support of banks, extension of credit to the seized corporate sector, guarantees of bank deposits, plans to recapitalize banks, coordinated monetary policy easing, etc.), the stock markets and the credit markets and the money markets fell further and further and at accelerated rates day after day all week, including another 7% fall in U.S. equities today.


When in markets that are clearly way oversold, even the most radical policy actions don’t provide rallies or relief to market participants. You know that you are one step away from a market crash and a systemic financial sector and corporate sector collapse. A vicious circle of deleveraging, asset collapses, margin calls, and cascading falls in asset prices well below falling fundamentals, and panic is now underway.


At this point severe damage is done and one cannot rule out a systemic collapse and a global depression. It will take a significant change in leadership of economic policy and very radical, coordinated policy actions among all advanced and emerging market economies to avoid this economic and financial disaster. Urgent and immediate necessary actions that need to be done globally (with some variants across countries depending on the severity of the problem and the overall resources available to the sovereigns) include:


another rapid round of policy rate cuts of the order of at least 150 basis points on average globally;

a temporary blanket guarantee of all deposits while a triage between insolvent financial institutions that need to be shut down and distressed but solvent institutions that need to be partially nationalized with injections of public capital is made;

a rapid reduction of the debt burden of insolvent households preceded by a temporary freeze on all foreclosures;

massive and unlimited provision of liquidity to solvent financial institutions;

public provision of credit to the solvent parts of the corporate sector to avoid a short-term debt refinancing crisis for solvent but illiquid corporations and small businesses;

a massive direct government fiscal stimulus packages that includes public works, infrastructure spending, unemployment benefits, tax rebates to lower income households and provision of grants to strapped and crunched state and local government;

a rapid resolution of the banking problems via triage, public recapitalization of financial institutions and reduction of the debt burden of distressed households and borrowers;

an agreement between lender and creditor countries running current account surpluses and borrowing, and debtor countries running current account deficits to maintain an orderly financing of deficits and a recycling of the surpluses of creditors to avoid a disorderly adjustment of such imbalances.


At this point anything short of these radical and coordinated actions may lead to a market crash, a global systemic financial meltdown and to a global depression. The time to act is now as all the policy officials of the world are meeting this weekend in Washington at the IMF and World Bank annual meetings.

Black Monday: 2 days after

Stock exchanges continue to plunge for the 3rd day. The WSJ oL opens with:

Central Banks Cut Rates World-Wide

The Federal Reserve, ECB and other major central banks announced coordinated cuts in target interest rates, the latest dramatic action to help stem a growing global financial crisis.

Palliative again! Of course, the liquidity and credit crisis is imploding, but policies are not changing anything. As Roubini has detected  in his Oct.3 post on the “cardiac arrest”, CIRCLATING K has almost stopped its circulation.

But no one is coordinating and harmonising ST and LT measures to regulate this hugh crisis of global capitalism. The crisis is likely precipitate  for the same reasons of its origin: an unequal distribution depressing effective demand, and behind it the weakness of the oppressed of the world, the lack of any alternative to usury capitalism, after the fall of totaliarian communism.

Actually, political power and CC.BB.  are turning around themselves, like in a Turkish Dervishi mystical dance, but never get to the point.

1) On the one hand, the “FINANCIAL K PARTY”, as well as other sections of K, push towards an EMERGENCY NATIONALISATION, along financial socialist lines: let’s make the taxpayer pay the crisis a  2nd time (foreclosures, and new taxes to save banks, sub-criminals and Wall Street). On this, as Paul Krugman notes today UK is leapfrogging the US: Paulson just buys toxic derivatives and commercial papers, Gordon Browns nationalises the whole UK banking system (except perhap HBOS). The US will get there as soon as Paulson’s plan will make its failure evident – likely at the start of Obama’s Presidence.

2) On the other hand, markets perceive how hard is the ongoing recession, forecast a deepening of the global recession in 2009, and their stocks precipitate. There is no floor in sight  for stock markets; they have already lost approx. 1/3  of their value and might fall another 50% in a few months (at 1/3 of their top). Then the expected real recession will hit harder and harder, as soon as Asia decelerates abruptly (small export-lead countres are doing it already, then it’ll ne the turn of India and China – see yesterday’s, Oct. 7  Are We Headed Towards a Global Recession?).

3) Without Keynesian-socialist ROBIN HOOD new  rules, fiscal and structural policies, the recession will not touch a floor until 2010, then even a depression is possible.

FINANCIAL SOCIALIST and myopic SR measures on liquidity, are leading the global economy to a historical, unprecedented disaster.


Published in: on October 8, 2008 at 1:23 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Black Monday: the day after


Understanding Black Monday. IT IS NO “NEGATIVE BUBBLE”, as silly bulls say.

a) It’s a low fundamentals issue, STUPID !!!

From yesterday on, global markets  are anticipating the real size of the  Main Street’s REAL RECESSION. The  shadow financial  – formal finance meltdown – credit crunch – deep recession chain is working from August 2007,  WITH NO COUNTERBALANCE in terms of policies and rules. Just post factum inadequate interventions on the consequences (even them, chaotic in Europe), and nothing upon the factors: neither Obama, nor McCain of course, are dealing prospectively with them (SEE OUR subcrime key document; in sum, long run deflation from a low global effective demand, hyper – concentration of income and wealth, imbalances and over-unemployment generated by: Reaganism, US private debts system and the post- communism “2nd Great Transformation”).

Prof. Roubini confirms today the title of our blog (which was inspired, last January, by our readings of Prof. Roubini himself):

The global economy is now already in a recession (as GDP is now contracting in all advanced economies and sharply slowing down in emerging market economies). We need now to take steps avoid a global depression.

And today’s rge papers aggregation “Are We Headed Towards a Global Recession?” specifies further:

IMF: The global financial crisis may have “extremely serious” consequences – including famines – in developing countries in Africa and Latin America.

◦ IMF: Signs of deceleration are most pronounced for several Emerging Asian economies that are tightly linked to the global manufacturing cycle: Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, Taiwan PoC, Singapore, Hong Kong SAR, and—to a lesser extent—India.

b) In Europe, an institutional factor adds up. The ususal no-EU keynesian and structural policies issue. The one, that already made EU the only 0 growth world region (Aglietta and Berrebi).

WAKING UP FROM A DREAM: the gloom understanding that European finance is not free from the consequences of the $ 10 tr. global SHADOW FINANCE MELTDOWN. As Breakingnews said yesterday (see quotation in our Black Monday  post),

” It shouldn’t have come to this. A year ago, Europe looked well placed to fend off financial ills. True, the UK had US-style problems with a housing bubble and a big trade deficit, but the eurozone had few bubbles, balanced trade, reasonably prudent governments, a firm central bank and a strong tradition of government guidance and support in banking. 

It turned out, though, that some European banks had dabbled too much in overvalued and overly complex US assets. The authorities have also been slow.”


After Reaganism, which blend of Socialism?

We quote from our ” AAA updates on subCrimes” static page, par. 2 on policies.

The Oct. 6 BLACK MONDAY, mainly but not only in  European stock markets (worst from 1987 Black Monday) confirms thet WE WERE RIGHT ON CONDEMNING THE PAULSON – BERNANKE  hurried up plan. Markets don’t care about it, and discount the recession is on and its size is much worst than they expected. Therefore the issue moves to the alternative between:

a) a financial (pseudo-) socialism: once failed again, the finance K party will move to nationalisations and direct State and SWF re-capitalisations … . It would eventually cure the financial meltdown, not the risk of the recession giving rise to a long depression in the 2010s.

b) a Keynesian socialism: redistribute drastically  income and wealth  (through policies, rules and Robin Hood fiscal policies) in order to gradually sort out of the 1990s longrun global deflation (Aglietta and Berrebi, Chesnais).

More in our .pdf –  subcrime key document.



Drowned World Tour

By Daniel Politi
Posted Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2008, at 6:29 AM ETIt’s a new week, and the bad news keeps getting worse. “The global financial crisis has taken a perilous turn,” declares the Wall Street Journal. Hopes that the massive bailout package approved by Congress last week would give investors some breathing room were quickly dashed as soon as the markets opened. And pretty much the whole world is feeling the pain. Markets in Asia, Europe, and Latin America closed deep in the red yesterday, a pattern that was repeated in the United States. The Dow Jones industrial average plunged 800 points, or 7.7 percent, before rebounding late in the day to close down nearly 370 points, or 3.6 percent. It marked the first time the Dow fell below the 10,000 mark since 2004. USA Today helpfully puts it in perspective and points out that the Dow has lost nearly 30 percent since Oct. 9, 2007.

The New York Times and Washington Post highlight word that the Federal Reserve is considering a plan to buy large amounts of unsecured short-term debt–so-called commercial paper–in an effort to revive the financial system. This “radical new plan” (NYT) would essentially make the Fed “a major funder of a wide range of U.S. businesses facing imminent cash shortages,” explains thePost. While the growing financial crisis is putting pressure on government officials to act, the Los Angeles Times points out that if there’s a clear message from yesterday’s worldwide sell-off it’s that investors are increasingly concerned“that government intervention won’t be enough to stave off a potentially severe global recession.”


TENGONO LE BORSE EUROPEE, ma non recuperano il crollo storico di ieri, mentre a NY il Dow Jones scende di oltre  il 5%, S&P del 5.7%, a conferma della bocciatura del, e sfiducia nell’ affrettato ed elettorale Piano Paulson. I titoli finanziari di NY al loro minimo dal 1997 (solo oggi -25% Morgan Stanley e BoA). In caduta libera le grandi banche inglesi (-50% in 2 giorni  HBOS e RBS), forzando un Piano Straordinario di Gordon Brown tra i $60 e 90 bn. Paul Krugman commenta:

Britain leads the way?


According to the FT,Gordon Brown, the UK prime minister, on Tuesday night ordered a massive taxpayer-backed cash injection to rebuild the balance sheets of Britain’s high street banks, in effect part-nationalising the sector at a cost of tens of billions of pounds.


Marco Onado su Il Sole 24 ore.

– la autocritica del CEO UniCredit, Aless. Profumo, in una lunga intervista a La Repubblica: abbiamo fatto il passo più lungo della gamba e sottovalutato il financial meltdown. Il fatto: gli azionisti (le fondazioni bancarie) che ricapitalizzano la prima banca italiana, al momento si guardano bene (in piena crisi e tentativo di rilancio, risanamento) dal dimissionare Profumo (responsabile di una strategia di crescita del tutto azzardata e FUORI TEMPO rispetto al ciclo mondiale, come lui stesso e’ costretto ad ammettere POST FACTUM), ma lo mettono SOTTO TUTELA. Escludendo le liquidazioni, nel 2007 e’ il manager più pagato d’Italia.

– DA IERI, ripreso oggi in Italia su La Stampa, l’incredibile udienza parlamentare di Mr Fuld PADRE-PADRONE di Lehman Bros (che i nostri lettori conoscono MOLTO BENE).

– IERI SERA ottimo dibattito alla morente LA 7 (che la Telecom vuol chiudere), all’Infedele, con parterre de rois che includeva dei Grandi come Marcello DeCecco ed un lucido, mordace Tony Negri. Peccato che, dopo averla tenuta a bagnomaria con Tronchetti Provera, ora la chiudano di brutto. L’ultima voce libera, troppo ose’  per la thanato-politica cavalier-leghista.

ORA LEGALE 13: il punto.

MERCATI VOLATILI. Abortisce un primo tentativo di rimbalzo delle borse europee in mattinata, che dura appena un’ora. A mezzogiorno nuova spinta verso il positivo, MENO CHE  A  MILANO. Qui Piazz’affari appesantita specie da una  UniCredit senza pace. Le ammissioni a denti stretti di Profumo (intervista cit.) non rassicurano molto: costui ha sbagliato proprio tutto,  con una iper-crescita non proporzionale alla capitalizzazione, in tempi di deflazione mondiale strutturale e di evidente (ad ogni osservatore onesto) preparazione della catastrofe della shadow finance, con tutte le conseguenze che oggi si dipanano.

Alle 13: Milano sullo 0%, resto Europa + 1%. UniCredito -4.4%, Telecom – 5,5% e  sotto gli E 0,9, Impregilo – 7%, e sospesa per ribasso Tiscali (-15%).

Nel pomeriggio escono i 3 Nobel della Fisica: gli svedesi hanno fregato il Gabibbo, e dato il Nobel a 2 giapponesi che avevano sviluppato la sua scoperta. Che figura di merda ci fanno a stoccolma!


Come avevamo previsto, oggi nessun nuovo tonfo ne’ recupero dell’abbassamento fundamentals-driven di ieri, LUNEDI NERO. A Milano (-0 .6%) problemi specifici:

– LA POPOLARE continua a tonfare (qualcuno deve sapere perche’),

– UniCredit insensibile alle dotte auto-critiche EX POST, perde un altro 4% perche’, mentre ieri S&P aveva mantenuto il rating stabile, questo pomeriggio Moody l’ha abbassato.

– Pianto greco del CFO Telecom: a queste quotazioni frazionali sotto €0.9, improbabile si facciano vivi gli  investitori potenziali, come SWF libici, Q8 e russi.